In a world where pickup trucks compete against each other on towing prowess and stump-pulling power, the Ridgeline is something of a counter-revolutionary. It doesn't have a V-8, and its maximum towing load is 5000 pounds -- respectable, but not remarkable. For those who want carlike comfort with the convenience of an open bed, though, the Ridgeline is a no-brainer. It’s the only mid-size pickup with unibody construction, so its body is rigid, like a car's. This helps provide a squeakfree interior and superb ride and handling. Inside, the cabin is less luxurious than that of some other Honda products but has plenty of storage space along with seating for five. Out back, the two-way tailgate swings down or pivots sideways, yielding easy access to the five-foot bed. Under the bed is a weatherproof, locking trunk that holds 8.5 cubic feet of tools, groceries, luggage, or whatever else you might want to keep dry and safe. All Ridgelines have four-wheel drive. The Ridgeline has now been on the market for six years and has never been a hot seller, which may be explained by the way it looks. Mating the front half of a Pilot sport-utility vehicle to a stubby pickup bed with slanted sides doesn’t make for a pretty truck, but there is beauty beneath its skin. Honda reliability comes standard, of course.
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